Friday, January 6, 2017

Party Craft Idea -- DIY Disco Ball Piñata

This is a great idea for a Diva themed party! Part family craft, part party decor, part party activity, and a whole lot of fun! Invite your own Diva Popstar to come get your guests all glitzed up with makeoversglitter tattoos, or hair bling, and get them rockin' their fancy new dance moves under this fabulous DIY disco ball piñata! Then, at the end of the party, have your guests take turns hitting it to see who can reveal the goodies inside.

Here's what you'll need:

  • 1 large balloon or punch ball (a regular balloon will do just fine, but a large round one works best; check your local party supply store)
  • 1 batch of wheat paste
  • Newspaper
  • Plastic cup full of rocks (to weigh down your balloon while you papier maché and paint it
  • Silver paint
  • Silver glitter
  • Large sequins, pailettes or reflective tape cut in to small squares
  • Fishing line
  • Candy or prizes for inside the piñata

Here's a step-by-step tutorial to get you going. 

Have fun!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Company Christmas Party Entertainers

We love this time time of year so much! Of course, at Fire Pixie, we do tons of birthdays and private parties, but we also provide entertainment for lots of corporate holiday parties and events, and we're always thrilled to be invited to help create happy holiday memories for companies' staff and their families. Nothing brings people together quite like the holiday season and we're always so happy to get to be a part of it!

Yesterday, a few of our Snow Fairies and Elves joined forces and attended a wonderful company Christmas party. There were balloon twisters to greet guests in the lobby, face painting Elves in Finance, airbrush artistry, and even a glitter tattooing Snow Fairy! 

As guests arrived, they were offered Elf hats and reindeer antlers, to help them get in to the Christmas spirit. They were also given small passport books which they used to go on a scavenger hunt to find little elves hidden around the beautifully decorated office. Then, once their passports were full, they were entered in a raffle to win all kinds of Christmas goodies.

From the elaborate decorations, to the delicious food (so many cookies!), to the laughter and joy, this was an event our Elves and Snow Fairies won't soon forget!

And of course, what holiday party is complete without a visit from the big man himself?

Thank you to our gracious hosts, and from all of us here at Fire Pixie: Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

New Characters!

We've added a couple new characters to our team!

First up, all the way from sunny Hawaii, it's Disney's newest heroine (and first ever Polynesian Princess): Moana!

Launch your canoe full of fun and adventure! Learn about Hawaiian history and culture while Moana entertains and delights your guests, and make your birthday girl feel like the hero she's always dreamed of being. 

Next, transport your birthday party to a world of magic, wizards, and witches by inviting Harry Potter to come teach everyone some spells that will make your birthday child remember this day forever. 

Our Harry Potter specializes in truly amazing magic that will leave even the adults scratching their heads. Book him alone, or invite Hermione too for a truly unforgettable party!

If you'd like to invite Moana or Harry Potter to your party, you can book them here

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Mermaid Adventures: My Ariel Photo shoot with Dolphins in Hawaii

I'm not very good at relaxing.  Every time I take a vacation I always seem to find a way to work.

This month I took my new neoprene Ariel mermaid tail to Hawaii and did an underwater photo shoot with the fabulous folks at Sea Through Sea.  I worked with them last year doing a photo shoot for my Elsa mermaid tail, and when I found myself on the Big Island again I gave them a call.

I wanted to show off the translucency of the monofin in this tail since that's it's most unique feature. I also thought it might be fun to try and recreate some movie poster shots from The Little Mermaid, since this tail is so unabashedly Ariel.

I made a Pinterest board with some ideas, and realized a lot of them were cave shots -- Ariel's Grotto is just so lovely, and I haven't done many shots like that before.  However, when we got to Hawaii the tides were unusually high thanks to the SuperMoon that happened in November 2016, so we ended up changing plans last-minute and going on board a dolphin swim boat instead, with Neptune Charlie's Adventures.  Yay, Dolphins!

There's nothing quite like swimming with wild friendly sea creatures in the ocean.

We chased a pod of spinner dolphins around and had some wonderful encounters with mom and baby dolphins.  On our last pass, just as we popped our heads up and took a breath, an adult spinner dolphin launched out of the water not 20 feet away from us, flipped around in the air and landed back in the water.  We all screamed with delight, and then whooped again when a second dolphin jumped joyfully in the air right behind us.

Such a wonderful time, such a wonderful trip, such a wonderful life.  Being a mermaid is just the best.

And here are a few of my favorite Mermaid photos!  Hooray!

See the whole album

Monday, November 21, 2016

New Character -- Princess Moana

If you saw Pixar's Finding Dory in theaters, you might have seen a little hint at something new and super exciting, set to be released in just a few short days. It's the 56th Disney animated feature, and it's got us here at Fire Pixie really excited! 

"Three thousand years ago, the greatest sailors in the world voyaged across the vast South Pacific, and discovered the many islands of Oceania. But then, for millennia, their voyages stopped - and no one today knows why. Enter Moana, a spirited teenager and born navigator (and Disney's first Polynesian Princess) who sets out on a daring mission to prove herself a master wayfinder, and sails the Pacific Ocean to complete her ancestors' unfinished quest. Join her and Maui, the legendary Hawaiian demigod, as together they traverse the open ocean on an action packed voyage, encountering enormous fiery creatures and impossible odds in search of a fabled island."
The CG-animated film is being directed by Ron Clementsand and John Musker (who were both the directors of AladdinThe Little Mermaid, and The Princess and the Frog), and Auli'i Cravalho and Dwayne Johnson provide the lead voices. It also features music written by the Tony award winning Lin Manuel Miranda, creator of Broadway's Hamilton.

We can't wait to see what Disney has in store for us this time! 

If you'd like to invite Moana to your upcoming party to teach your guest all about Hawaiian culture, dazzle them with her big bag of Island magic tricks, or even teach them a little hula dancing, you can book her here.  

Friday, November 4, 2016

A Life in Gowns: Meet Princess Lanie

Ever wonder who we are when we're not all glitzed up, entertaining your little ones with our mad face paint and balloon skills, or dazzling them with our big bag of magic tricks? We're a diverse group of folk, each coming from a different performance background, and with a little bit of a different story. 

Allow me to introduce: Princess Lanie!

Lanie is one of our most experienced and most requested entertainers. In her 9 years working with Fire Pixie, she's appeared at almost 1000 parties, and brought joy and laughter to countless kiddos. Now, she's spread those sparkly wings, and flown off to Los Angeles to open a brand new Fire Pixie branch, and we couldn't be more excited!

Lanie's always loved storytelling, dressing up, magic, and everything fairytale related. When she was quite little (about 3 - 4), like so many girls that age, she dreamed of becoming a Fairy Princess when she grew up. As she got older though, her dream evolved, and she decided that since Fairyhood might not exactly be an option, she'd be an actress and a writer, so she could share her love of storytelling with the masses. 

In pursuit of this dream, Lanie studied theater in school, and started working in the wonderful world of the arts, doing marketing and design for some small theater companies, art studios, and galleries. She traveled to Turkey when she was in college, where she discovered the beautiful art of Turkish shadow puppetry and was absolutely blown away! When the time came for her to do her undergrad thesis, Lanie wrote a grant and got to go back to Turkey, to study it more closely. It was there that she learned how to make puppets, learned all about the social and political history of puppetry, and learned that there were even a number of modern puppet troupes doing political shows right here in the US. 

When she returned from her trip, the summer after college, Lanie worked with Bread and Puppet theater in Vermont, which boats the largest puppet in the world. 

After moving to the Bay, Lanie discovered that this area is a hotbed for puppeteers (who knew??), and began working with a few groups here, doing puppet design, mostly for adult shows, but some for kids too. 

She also continued working in theater, and found herself in a Fairytales for Kids show being performed in schools and libraries with Fire Pixie's own Sarah. Upon learning of Lanie's love of storytelling and puppets, Sarah suggested that Lanie meet Erin. 

Lanie had no idea that such a job existed; one that could combine her love of laughter, storytelling, and magic so well, and her three-year-old self was absolutely over the moon! So she met with Erin, and it was clear from the get-go that this was exactly where Lanie needed to be.

Since then, Lanie's had the great pleasure of appearing at tons of parties, as a variety of different characters, but is especially fond of being a Fairy Princess or a Pirate. 

"They're both super fun and flexible characters" she says. "I get to make up my own stories and improv with kids, instead of having a set script to work with." 
Lanie is adored by kids of all ages, and really gets a kick out of the 3 - 6 age range: 
"Three to six year olds just love being silly!" she says. "Give me a group of three-year-olds and I can keep them laughing forever with one joke. They just love it! The threes and fours are in that silly wordplay area, which is really fun. The fives and sixes are really in to the stories, and know everything there is to know about their favorite characters, which means you can get in to really cool story nuances with them." 
 An excellent entertainer all-around, Lanie particularly loves doing activities like magic, puppets (of course), and birthday theater. 
"Magic is always fun because I can really be silly and joke around with the kids. The birthday theater is great because you get to help the kids come up with their very own story" she says. 
After so many years of performing at kids' parties, Lanie of course has tons of happy party memories, but one in particular stands out: 
"I was doing a Fairy Princess party" says Lanie, "and had a guest request something special for her face paint design: a waterfall on one cheek with 5 droplets of water splashing off it, because she was 5 years old." 
Always up for a challenge, Lanie set to work creating this special design, and apparently, she nailed it!
"When I finished and showed this little girl her face in the mirror, she absolutely lit up, and said 'I LOVE MYSELF!', which as a children's entertainer is what we call a BIG win!" 

 Lanie's party hosts and hostesses always have wonderful things to say about her performances, and it's no wonder she's one of our most popular entertainers. 

"Lanie was great with the kids. She had great energy and did awesome face painting and balloons. Kids had lots of fun!! She also made the birthday girl feel really special. Thank you Lanie for making my child's birthday more special." 

"My daughter absolutely LOVED it! She was so excited when she saw Elsa walking down the street. And Lanie made her feel so special and like a princess!" 

"Lanie had everyone mesmerized and entertained the moment she came through the door -- girls, boys and all the grown ups too! She had a beautiful voice and did the most awesome face paintings and glitter tattoos. Several of the adults ended up getting their faces painted and glittered up too."

So, why the move to LA? 

Lanie had been feeling as though she'd kind of plateaued a bit in the Bay, and was looking for a new challenge. She and her partner had been talking about making a move to LA for a while, and Lanie had been considering opening a business of some kind there. So she asked Erin if she might pick her brain a bit about small business in general. Erin was more than happy to help, and sat down with Lanie to brainstorm. It wasn't until Erin said "You know... you could always open a Fire Pixie branch in SoCal, too" that Lanie realized that she could take her love or performing, magic, and storytelling down to LA with her, and keep right on working in this awesome family of performers. She was overjoyed, and Fire Pixie SoCal was born!

When Lanie's not out performing or in the office booking parties for lucky Southern California kiddos, these days she's focused mostly on motherhood, having just welcomed her own bundle of joy to the world. Since she loves performing, and making silly voices, she's begun exploring the world of voiceover acting, too, and looks forward to getting in to that more soon.

If you'd like to invite Lanie or any of her wonderful LA-based entertainers to your next party to inspire your little ones to follow their dreams, you can fill out our online booking form, or contact the SoCal office directly at 714.831.1880. 

Friday, October 21, 2016

A Life In Gowns: Meet Princess Windy

Ever wonder who we are when we're not all glitzed up, entertaining your little ones with our mad face paint and balloon skills, or dazzling them with our big bag of magic tricks? We're a diverse group of folk, each coming from a different performance background, and with a little bit of a different story. 

Allow me to introduce: Princess Windy!

A born performer, Windy got her start onstage at age 6, when she landed the role of Charlene "Cha Cha" DiGregorio in a production of Grease at her school. She had 4 speaking lines, which was the most of anyone in her age group, and got to dress up and wear makeup, which she thought was the best thing ever! The production was a hit, and Windy was officially hooked. 

When she was small, Windy was convinced that one day, she'd grow up to be a Princess. Not a make-believe Princess, mind you, but real life royalty. Her mother rained on that parade somewhat, though, telling Windy that being Jewish she likely couldn't be a real princess, since most royalty was Christian. But Windy wasn't about to let that stop her, and decided that if real life royalty wasn't in her future, well then she'd be an actress, so she could be whatever she wanted! She spent her childhood with this dream in mind, playing dress up and pretending to be a Queen, and all her friends were, of course, her servants. Her favorite Disney princess was always Ariel, and Windy used to spend hours swimming around in the pool like a mermaid and playing all kinds of mermaid games.

Years later, Windy's love of theater was alive and well, and she worked in theater admin doing marketing and development, helping to bring the magic of live performance to the masses. She started developing her own material, and found that the world of physical comedy was where she wanted to be more than anything. So she attended the Clown Conservatory in San Francisco to develop her skills. It was there that she met Drea, another wonderful entertainer (and Fire Pixie Princess), who clued Windy in to the magic of children's entertainment.

"Kids are the most honest audience," Drea told her. "They'll really tell you if you're funny or not."  
Windy had been on the road, touring her one-woman show through the US and Canada, and needed a job when she landed back in the Bay. Drea had been working with Fire Pixie for a while and was loving it, and thought Windy would be a fantastic addition to our team.  
Boy, was she right! Since then, Windy's performed at tons of parties with Fire Pixie, and her clients absolutely love her!
"I loved Windy's character! She wasn't a 'typical' Fairy Princess, all cutesy and saccharine. She was more like a wacky, bumbling Fairy Godmother with TONS of energy."
"Windy was awesome and the kids loved her. She was a natural and the birthday girl wants another party tomorrow with Windy :). She connected on a personal level with most kids in the party. Several other parents commented that she was the best Elsa they'd seen in a Frozen themed party. She has great energy and improvised adeptly to a variety of situations. I'd work with her again any day! Thanks again for making this a great experience!"
She's got a great repertoire of characters, but especially loves being a Balloon Pixie or Clown, since those are really open and flexible and really give her the opportunity to flex her comedic muscles. She still loves being a Princess too, though, and brings her own flavor of physical comedy to every character she plays.
"No matter what costume I'm in, I'm always a silly variation on that character, which makes it a little more accessible to the kids. They love seeing Elsa, who's usually a little hard and cold, loosen up a bit and just play with them!" 
Windy loves doing her comedy magic show for kids, especially as Elsa, doing ice and snow magic. The way she does her magic, everything is a joke on her, and she gets to be super silly and make fun of herself. She absolutely loves getting the kids all riled up and poking fun at her, too. 
"It's the most fun ever when kids are sitting there yelling 'It's right there, Elsa!' when you can't find your rainbow or what-have-you", she says. 
She also really loves doing dance parties because she gets to be super physical and run around and really play with the kids, which they absolutely love. She brings tons of fabric to parties, and literally throws them around over the kids' heads, or uses them to make tents for the dance party to happen in, or plays parachute type games. 
Kids of all ages love Windy's show, but she really loves working with the 4 - 5 age group. 
"Four and five-year-olds are the best!" she says. "They understand the magic and really get the comedy and jokes, but they're not trying to challenge it or look for holes in it. They get why it's funny that your rainbow disappeared, or changed in to ice crystals, and they love being a part of making it happen."
Windy's got so many happy memories form parties, but remembers one party in particular with especial fondness: 
"A while back, I was Elsa at a birthday party for an adorable little girl named Emma, who had just turned 5. She was absolutely blown away and just couldn't believe that Elsa had come all the way from Arendelle just to celebrate her birthday with her! She'd drawn 6 pictures for me, which she presented to me with obvious pride, along with a giant rock, which she said I was to take back to Arendelle as a souvenir. She took great care throughout the party to be a good hostess, and make sure I had everything I needed. It was a hot day, and assuming I must be parched, she made me multiple glasses of her very own hydrating birthday cocktail: a combination of lemonade, birthday cake, goldfish crackers, and blueberries." 
Wise beyond her years, Emma knew that doing all that magic and face painting musty be making Elsa hungry, too.
"I brought you a tomato, Elsa!" she said. "A what?" said Windy/Elsa, "We don't have these in Arendelle!" This prompted Emma to take her inside to show her the fridge where they keep all their food. At the end of the party, she threw her arms around Windy and gave her a big kiss. "I love you Elsa!" she said. "My heart just melted", says Windy. 
When she's not entertaining kids at parties, Windy's busy running her very own company: taking care of all the marketing, outreach, costuming, and production. "It's a full time job," she says, "but I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing!" She continues to tour her award winning one woman theatrical comedy show around the US and Canada with great success, and is working on developing a half hour kid's stage show, too.

If you'd like to invite Windy to your party to make your guests giggle with glee, you can
book her here.